COUNCIL BLUFFS — Increased groundwater is taking a toll on the sanitary sewer system in Council Bluffs.
Two sanitary sewers collapsed over the Fourth of July weekend, adding to the four that previously suffered breaks.
“The high groundwater forces water into the pipes and moves sand with it,” City Engineer Matt Cox said. “When enough sand has been moved, the pipes lose support and fall, crack or break.”
The high groundwater has caused pipe breaks at 17th Street and Avenue O, the Westlake Village near Lake Manawa, the alley between Avenues J and K at 31st Street, the 2400 block of Avenue L, 24th Street and Avenue M, and 31st Street between Avenues G and H.
Don Gross, the city's public information officer, said emergency repairs will be made to the sewer lines. The city will be letting bids this week.
The sewer breaks might have caused backups in some homes, but bypasses keep the sewer systems working. Cox said he was unaware of anyone being forced to evacuate a residence because of a broken sanitary sewer line.